Asking, “can chickens eat grapefruit?” You’re not alone:
YES, chickens can eat grapefruits, and ― better yet ― it’s peeling too.
What’s more, citrus fruit contains not only vitamin C, minerals, dietary fiber, and sugar but also lots of water, all of which benefit the chicken’s health.
So, to learn more, dive in to discover grapefruit’s benefits for chickens…
Table of Contents
- A healthy treat, grapefruit is an excellent choice as an addition or occasional treat for your chickens.
- This fruit packs a great source of vitamins, accompanying a wide variety of meals.
- There are 3 methods to grapefruit to your chickens: Cutting the fruit into pieces, Scooping the fruit, and mixing the fruit into their feeds.
Health Benefits of Grapefruit for Chickens
If you’re eager to know all the juicy benefits of grapefruit, turn to no other than Healthline’s Health Specialist Brianna Elliot, RD, who says this about grapefruit :
“Grapefruit is a tropical citrus fruit known for its sweet yet tart taste. It is rich in nutrients, antioxidants, and fiber.“
Grapefruits have that sour and bitter taste that people either enjoy or don’t. This fruit contains nutrients that can help boost a person’s nutritional needs.
While grapefruit is safe for humans, can chickens eat grapefruit too? After all, it’s a fruit, and most fruits are safe for chickens to eat.
Better yet, grapefruits contain a high amount of water which makes them an excellent source of hydration.
Chickens that do eat grapefruit will benefit a lot from the nutrition that it has.
Surprisingly, grapefruit is low in calories yet high in nutrients. You get a fruit rich in antioxidants, vitamin C, and fiber ― pretty cool, hey?
To summarize, I’ve listed some of the benefits the chickens can get from eating grapefruits:
1. Improve Immune System
Grapefruit is high in vitamin C, which has antioxidant properties that protect the cells from harmful bacteria and viruses.
Additionally, vitamin C is known to prevent chickens from getting sick easily and recover from illness more quickly.
2. High in Power Antioxidants
Antioxidants protect the cell from damage caused by free radicals, which are unstable molecules.
Below is an overview of 3 of the essential antioxidants in grapefruit :
- Vitamin C: A powerful antioxidant in high amounts in grapefruit, which helps prevent and protect the cells from damage.
- Beta-carotene: It’s converted into vitamin A and helps prevent or reduce heart disease and cancer.
- Flavanones: Due to their anti-inflammatory properties, they have been shown to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol, and this helps the chicken mitigate the risk of developing heart disease.
3. Great For Hydration
Grapefruit contains a high amount of water, which is very hydrating for chickens. Water makes up most of the fruit’s weight.
In the summer, when it’s hot, feeding grapefruits to chickens will keep them hydrated. Besides being hydrated, they will also get a lot of nutrition from the fruit.
For a crafty summary, check out this excellent video on the benefits of this red delight:
How To Feed Grapefruit To Chickens
To fully answer “can chickens eat grapefruit,” you need more than a “yay” or a “nay.” You need to know the “hows.” Without further ado, here you go…
When it comes to feeding grapefruits to the chickens, there are a couple of methods you can try. Give this method a try and see what works best for you:
Method 1: Cutting
To ace this method, follow these steps:
1. Cut the grapefruit into halves. (This is the easiest and fastest way.)
2. Place the halves onto their feeders or the ground.
The result? The chickens will peck at it and eat it. The peels the chickens will probably not eat since it’s too harsh for them to tear them.
Method 2: Scooping
To perform scooping, do this:
1. Scoop out the fruit’s flesh
2. Place this flesh in the chickens’ bowl (Note: If you have a flock of more than 10 chickens, place the flesh into a couple of bowls.)
This way, each chicken will get their share of the grapefruit. That’s the bitter truth (I promise!)
Method 3: Mixing
To do this, you can:
1. Mix the fruit into the chicken feed. (This way, they’ll also get a lot of nutrition from other products.)
2. Feed your dish to your chickens.
You can mix the fruit and make a tasty and nutritious fruit salad for them or mix it with vegetables.
How Much And How Often To Feed Grapefruit To Chickens
Like other citrus fruits, grapefruit should be fed to the chickens in moderation. Too much could cause them to have digestive problems such as an upset stomach and diarrhea.
So, feeding the chickens a couple of times per week is enough for them. Besides grapefruit, you should focus on other fruits as well.
By giving them a variety of fruits, the chickens will get nutrients that the grapefruit doesn’t have.
At each feeding, you should feed the chickens based on the size of your flock. The larger the flock, the more grapefruits that you should put out.
On average, one grapefruit for every 5 chickens is plenty. You don’t want to give them too much, or it will cause them to stop eating their primary food.
Grapefruit and other fruits should make up 10% of the chicken’s diet; the rest will come from commercial feeds.
Other Fruits That Chickens Can Eat
Blueberries are rich in antioxidants and other nutrients. Blueberries can be fed to them as fresh berries or frozen, and both types make an excellent treat for chickens.
This tropical fruit is an excellent source of fiber, potassium, vitamin C, and other nutrients. Chickens love to eat bananas due to their sweet taste.
However, too many bananas, especially riped ones, can cause them to become overweight.
It’s known for its high content of fiber, protein, and vitamin C, and all of these are what the chickens need to stay healthy.
Raspberries can be fed to them as fresh berries or frozen berries. Both types make an excellent treat for chickens.
4. Kiwi Fruit
It’s nutritionally superior to commonly-eaten fruits such as apples, oranges, and bananas. So, kiwi is known as a superfood.
Compared to an apple, a kiwi contains six times the nutrient density. As for oranges, kiwis have two times more vitamin C.
If you’re interested in understanding more about chicken dietary needs, be sure to peruse our enlightening articles “Are Raspberries Good for Chickens?”, “Can Chickens Have Cranberries?”, and “Can Chickens Eat Frozen Blueberries?” for a comprehensive guide to poultry nutrition.
1. Is Grapefruit Bad For Chickens?
Naturally, chickens avoid citrus fruit, but that doesn’t mean it’s terrible for them. But remember moderation!
However, if the chickens are fed grapefruit in moderation, it won’t affect them.
2. Can Chickens Eat Grapefruit Peels?
But, most chickens will avoid these due to their tough skin, and it will be hard to peck at them.
The peels, like the fresh ones, contain an abundance of nutrition.
So, can chickens eat grapefruit? You bet!
A tasty treat and healthy food, grapefruit is an excellent addition to your chickens’ diets. This juicy fruit supplies your chickens with just the right glitter ― rich in nutrients.
Amazingly, you can feed this refreshing treat in 3 ways: Cutting, Scooping, and Mixing.
But wait: there’s more: if you’ve any stories or ideas, feel free to let me know (I can’t wait for some juicy fruity comments.)
Until next time…
1. Elliott B. 10 Science-Based Benefits of Grapefruit [Internet]. Healthline. Healthline Media; 2017. Available from: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/10-benefits-of-grapefruit
2. Price A. Grapefruit Beats Out Anti-Obesity Drugs When It Comes to Weight Loss [Internet]. Dr. Axe. 2017 [cited 2023 Jan 22]. Available from: https://draxe.com/nutrition/grapefruit-benefits-weight-loss/
Alina Hartley is a small-town girl with a ginormous love of bearded dragons. It all started with Winchester, a baby bearded who was abandoned at the shelter by his former owners because of a birth defect that caused one front leg to be shorter than the other. Alina originally went to the shelter looking for a guinea pig, but one look at Winchester and it was love at first sight. From that day on, Alina has dedicated her life to learning everything she can about bearded dragons. She loves helping new beardie parents start their incredible journey with these magnificent reptiles.
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